1 Kings: Studies in Hebrew Narrative & Poetry

Jerome T. Walsh

1 Kings: Studies in Hebrew Narrative & Poetry
1 Kings: Studies in Hebrew Narrative & Poetry

Book Details

Series: Berit Olam
Categories: 1/2 Kings
Tags: Technical

Book Information

The narratives of Solomon and Jeroboam, of Elijah and Ahab, have fascinated readers for millennia. Even apart from questions of historical authenticity, they are gripping stories of richly drawn characters caught up in the complex tale of God's dealings with Israel. This study explores the narrative world created by 1 Kings' ancient Israelite author: the people who inhabit it, the lives they live, the deeds they do, and the face of God who is revealed in their stories.

An introduction explains the significance of 1 Kings as a historical narrative. Originally intended as a literal history, after centuries of writing and rewriting it is now as much a literary work as a historical one: The views of those who formed it can be discerned and studied. Walsh also explains how the rich traditions of Hebrew prose narrative and the Hebrew language itself affect our reading of 1 Kings.


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4.6 out of 5 based on 5 user ratings
Graham Ware November 9, 2018 5 5
Berit Olam focuses on literary forms, analyzing the text. Walsh's 1 Kings volume accomplishes the goals of the the series with great success.
A.E. Carnehl January 15, 2017 5 5
Walsh's commentary stands out as being exceptionally attuned to the narrative of 1 Kings. It reads more like a work of literary criticism than a biblical commentary, but he is also well versed in all the technical and theological discussions regarding 1 Kings.
Commentary in the context of a study of literary and narrative forms of 1 Kings. [Full Review]
Denver Seminary Journal June 16, 2008 4 5
Commentary in the context of a study of literary and narrative forms of 1 Kings. [Full Review]
Collegeville, MN: Liturgical Press, 1996. Pp. xxii + 393, Cloth, $39.95, ISBN 0814650449. Series Editor: David Cotter Richard D. Nelson Lutheran Theological Seminary Gettysburg, PA 17325 The commentary series Berit Olam is intended to make literary readings of the Hebrew Bible accessible to a wide audience. The target group includes those with little or no knowledge of Hebrew or of literary and narrative interpretation. This particular volume in the series successfully addresses such a readership. Yet at the same time the author is able to engage the more sophisticated scholar with fresh and interesting insights into the narrative of 1 Kings. The book is "user friendly" in the sense that it begins with a primer on narrative criticism that sets forth basic terminology and methodology. In the body of the commentary, arguments grounded on the grammar and structure of the Hebrew text are usually explained clearly in non-technical style. The selected bibliography should prove useful to the volume's general audience. There is a scripture index and a helpful general index in which one may discover multiple examples of literary features such as point of view, irony, flashback and foreshadowing, and the like. Overall, the commentary moves from the smaller units (individual stories and their subparts) to four larger text blocks that focus on four major characters: Solomon, Jeroboam, Elijah, and Ahab. The structure of the commentary varies to fit the character of specific text units. However, the usual pattern is to introduce the overall structure of a section first, then move through its subsections. After the individual stories that make up each of the four major blocks have been reviewed in a detailed way, the commentary then takes up the stories of Solomon, Jeroboam, Elijah, and Ahab as integrated wholes. [Full Review]

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